Report: Missouri signee Namon Wright to ask for release from National Letter of Intent

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One of the most important tasks for a new head coach is recruiting, from the players who have yet to make a choice to those who are already a part of the program. Of course there will be turnover, as evidenced by the rising number of transfers in college basketball, but the key for any new coach is to make sure he’s got enough quality pieces to be competitive.

And there there’s the dilemma of what to do with prospects who have signed a National Letter of Intent with the prior staff. While some will decide to stick around despite a coaching change others will want to reopen their recruitment, and that’s reportedly the case with Missouri signee Namon Wright.

One day after Eric Sondheimer of the Los Angeles Times reported that Wright would be requesting his release Jacob Steimer of the Columbia Missourian confirmed the news with Wright’s high school coach. According to Pacific Hills coach Ivan Barahona, Missouri asked Wright to hold off on the request until they completed the hiring process with former Central Missouri head coach Kim Anderson eventually being the hire.

However despite this move to request a release from his NLI, Wright apparently remains interested in Missouri despite the departure of the coaches (Frank Haith and Mark Phelps) who spent so much time recruiting him.

Barahona said Anderson will be in Los Angeles on Tuesday to talk with Wright, and he made it clear that Wright is still heavily considering attending Missouri.

“He likes Missouri a lot, let met tell you,” Barahona said.

Wright told his coach that Missouri’s campus is beautiful, that the people he met there were great, and that he enjoys Missouri’s fans who follow him on Twitter.

Missouri currently has two players committed to joining the program, with Jakeenan Gant deciding to remain signed and D’Angelo Allen committing Sunday. The retention of Gant was obviously a positive development for Anderson and his staff, which includes holdover Tim Fuller.

And if they can convince Wright, a Top 100 product, to join the program Missouri will receive a much-needed boost on the perimeter as they look to account for the early departures of Jordan Clarkson and Jabari Brown.

VIDEO: Zion Williamson throws down a vicious putback

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Zion Williamson made another highlight-reel play on Saturday outside of Atlanta as he threw down a vicious putback dunk at the Best of the South.

The five-star prospect has returned from a minor knee injury this spring to look like his old self in July as he’s entertained packed gyms of fans and college coaches the last two weeks.

The Class of 2018 star is currently regarded as the No. 3 overall prospect in the latest Rivals.com national rankings.

(h/t: Courtside Films)

Five-star 2018 point guard Darius Garland cuts list to six schools

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Five-star Class of 2018 point guard Darius Garland revealed the final six schools that he’s considering on Friday.

The N0. 12 overall prospect in the Class of 2018, according to Rivals, the 6-foot-0 Garland is one of the top floor generals in the nation as he is still considering Duke, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, UCLA and Vanderbilt.

A native of Nashville, Garland is a potentially elite perimeter threat at the college level as he’s one of the more deadly three-point marksmen in the nation.

Garland spent this spring and summer playing with Bradley Beal Elite in the Nike EYBL as he averaged 16.8 points and 4.8 assists per game in the league this spring.

VIDEO: Kentucky’s John Calipari participates in the #DriveByDunkChallenge

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
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The #DriveByDunkChallenge is sweeping the nation on social media this summer.

Rules to participate are pretty simple:

  1. Drive around in your vehicle.
  2. Find a basketball hoop (or a basketball ring if you’re Ted Cruz) on a random driveway.
  3. Run out of your car and dunk on that random hoop while a friend films.
  4. Run back to your car and drive away.

Let Anthony Davis show you how it works:

Pretty simple, right?

The #DriveByDunkChallenge isn’t raising money or awareness for ALS like the #IceBucketChallenge did three years ago, but it’s something harmless and fun to do to pass the time during the dog days of summer.

Sensing an opportunity to join an Internet craze, while also following in the footsteps of his former player Kentucky star, Wildcats head coach John Calipari got involved with his own dunk late Friday night.

And his video is much funnier than I thought it would be.

While most #DriveByDunkChallenge videos are done by healthy and spry teenagers who are cruising neighborhoods during the day, Calipari, and his hip replacement, got in on the fun with a late-night dunk.

I love that Calipari ditched the ball behind his back while running back to the car after the dunk.

Most people who participate in the challenge usually have their own ball and keep it with them through completion. But Calipari either picked up a random ball in the driveway or just he lost the handle with his own ball and had a turnover.

The next time Calipari goes hard on one of his point guards for losing control and playing too fast, remember this moment.

Creighton’s Khyri Thomas posterizes defender

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Creighton rising junior wing Khyri Thomas, like several of his teammates, are taking part in the Omaha Summer League this offseason.

On Thursday night, the 6-foot-3, 205-lb. Thomas eviscerated a defender with a one-handed posterization.

Thomas is coming off a breakout sophomore campaign for the Bluejays. He started all 35 games, averaging 12.3 points, 5.8 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.5 steals per game. Aside from the increase in offensive production, Thomas served as one of the top defenders in the Big East. He shared the Big East Defensive Player of the Year Award with Villanova’s Josh Hart and Mikal Bridges.

Zion Williamson throws down 360 windmill dunk

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Zion Williamson added another jaw-dropping dunk in the layup lines on the first night of the second live evaluation period.

Williamson and his SC Supreme team took on Each 1 Teach 1 at the Hoopseen Best of the South at the LakePoint Sporting Community in greater Atlanta.

The 6-foot-7 power forward threw down a 360 windmill dunk during his pregame routines.

Each 1 Teach 1 would pick up a 70-67 victory over SC Supreme. Williamson would end with a monster stat line of 37 points and seven rebounds.